1. The defendants obtained a portion of the estate registered in the name of the plaintiff; and the plaintiff and the defendants put in a joint application to the Collector (Ex. A) for an apportionment of the peishkush payable on the two portions of the estate. According to that agreement they prayed the Collector to fix the amount payable by the defendants at Rs. 145. The Collector separately registered the portion of the estate belonging to the defendants, but at the time of riling the suit he had not apportioned the assessment. In order to fix the assessment some inquiry is necessary, and although the plaintiff contended that the Collector had apportioned the assessment, the lower Court held that there was no evidence to that effect. The plaintiff brought this suit on Ex. A praying for contribution of peishkush from the defendants. He was obliged to bring this suit now because otherwise the suit for the suit faslis would have been barred by limitation.
2. In revision it is argued that under the Madras Land Revenue Assessment Act no suit lies in the Civil Court. The petitioners also contend that the suit is not of a small cause nature and, finally, that the lower Court did not fix the proper rate. Section 4 of the Madras Land Revenue Assessment Act makes it clear that, until the assessment has been apportioned, the Government look only to the old registered holder for the peishkush and after the apportionment Government look partly to the old registered holder and partly to the new registered holder for the shares of the peishkush apportioned to them. This Act deprives the parties from recourse to a Civil Court with regard to the amount fixed for peishkush; but there is nothing in this Act or in the Rent Recovery Act which prevents a party from coming to a Civil Court for contribution for peishkush paid after a portion of the estate has passed in to other hands.
3. Various sections of the-Small Cause Courts Act have been referred to, but the one that is now relied on in this petition as barring a decision by a Small Cause Court is Article 41. Article 41 prohibits suits for contribution by a sharer in joint property; but this is not a suit for contribution by a sharer in joint property. The properties of the parties are separate; but because apportionment has not been made, the owner of one separated portion of land was obliged to pay the whole of the peishkush. The suit was therefore properly filed in the Small Cause Court.
4. With regard to the amount fixed, even though Ex. A was not an agreement, the Court rightly placed great reliance on a figure that had been agreed upon by the holders of the two parts of the estate; and I find no reason to think that the decision of the lower Court on the facts is incorrect.
5. Nothing that the Court has decided in this suit will, of course, preclude the Collector from fixing what he considers to be the proper amount of peishkush payable by the plaintiff and by the defendants respectively. If the parties have any grievance with regard to the rates fixed by the Collector, their remedy is by way of an appeal to the Board of Revenue.
6. This revision petition is dismissed with costs.
7. A memorandum of cross-objections has been filed, contending that there was material before the Court or, at any rate, there could have been material before the lower Court, sufficient to prove that the Collector had passed an order apportioning the peishkush. It is not necessary to consider this memo, of cross-objections and it is dismissed without costs.